Oil Prices Drop, Gas Still Rising

The highest U.S. oil production in nearly a half-century continues to drive down oil prices.

Domestic crude oil output averaged more than ten-million barrels a day for the first time since the early 1970s last week, thanks in large part to shale. 

But all that oil is going elsewhere.

“The refineries aren't prepared or geared to handle light sweet crude from shale, so that's why you're seeing so much of it being imported still from places like Canada and Venezuela, and so much of our light sweet crude going to places like Asia and even the Middle East,” says Bloomberg's Dan McLaughlin, New Energy Finance oil analyst.

All eyes are on OPEC, which continues to cut back production, so McLaughlin expects higher gas prices through the spring.

“We have quite a bit now here being produced in the U.S., but globally there's been a significant cut in supplies,” he says.  “We're also about to hit peak refinery maintenance season which will produce less gasoline and drive prices up quite a bit, so expect to feel a bit of a pinch at the pump in the coming months.”

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